Put Thant Cell Down!

Please put that cell down. Stop looking constantly at that time draining tool that will not move you forward towards anything great in your day. The cell…a necessary evil. But we need to take control of our phone and stop letting IT take control of our lives.

Try this the next time you pick up the phone, start a timer. Or even easier, look at the time indicated at the top corner. After a few seconds, that time will disappear from your line of sight and disappear from your focus. Then look at it when you are finished whatever your where looking at. You are in for a big surprise, 5, 10, 15, 20 minutes + has passed since looking at the time, for what? FB, Instagram, Youtube or any time draining app. Even the time spend looking at email each second or when a notification bleeps on your phone.

5 minutes doesn’t look like a whole lot of, but count the amount of times you look at you phone during one day. This evaluation will shock you.

Why do we have to stand at attention at each moment our cell bleeps, pings or rings? We let this thing take over. We bow to it as if it’s the all mighty. Thinking something bad will happen if we do not pay attention. We even put more attention to our cell phone then our children. How many times have I seen parents surrender all their attention to their phones in the presence of their children. Nothing would pull them away from their screens, but for a very brief warning to their child not to bother anybody, meaning not to bother them on their phone.

This is a great one. Couples at a restaurant sitting for a romantic evening pull their cells out and put them on the table. All evening peaking at the screen not to miss anything important. What could be more important then the time spent with a loved one?

I was at tennis practice for the son of a friend. The kids practicing were having a blast. All smiles, they would turn to their parents in the stand to see if mom or dad is seeing all the great things they are doing. They were wanting some small acknowledgment that the parent is happy for them and proud. Nope, nothing, no reaction from mom or dad. Of course not, they could not see their kid, all their attention is on the screens of their phones. For loves sake, its your kid out their having fun and wanting to show you. Instagram is more important? Wake up from your daze, you will regret not paying attention to these small moments. They add up to a life.

One of my favourite is walking taking the subway and looking at people moving from one station to another. All you can see is bowed heads praying to their cell screens, completely oblivious to their surroundings. What is fascinating, is they barely bump into anything. They walk down stairs effortlessly. There are zombies.

No, no, no…this one is even better; at a concert and seeing lots of fans not look at the show but looking at their screens while recording the show. Why bother attending the concert? You are not even looking at it live, you are looking at the show through your phone. Stay home and save some money. Just buy the concert on DVD or download the show. It will better recorded then on your cell.

Untether yourself from your cellular phones. Try to do this:

  • Leave the phone at home.
  • Turn all notifications off.
  • Place the phone on « do not disturb »

This will be very uncomfortable at first. You will go through withdrawal. What you will notice is all the cool things happening around you that you knew was there but wasn’t paying any attention. You will see your child smile at you with all their love.